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Pandurang Shastri Athavale Bio


Pandurang Shastri Vaijnath Athavale (Gujarati: પાંડુરંગ શાસ્ત્રી આઠવલે, Marathi: पांडुरंग शास्त्री आठवले) (October 19, 1920–October 25, 2003), also known as Dada-ji (Gujarati: દાદા, Marathi: दादा), which literally translates as elder brother in Marathi, was a Indian philosopher, spiritual leader, social reformer [2] and Hinduism reformist, who founded the Swadhyay Movement and the Swadhyay Parivar organization (Swadhyay Family) in 1954 [3], a self-knowledge movement based on the Bhagavad Gita, which has spread across nearly 100,000 villages in India [4][5], with over 5 million members [6]. He was also noted for his discourses or "pravachans" on Srimad Bhagawad Gita and Upanishads. He was awarded the 'Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion' in 1997 [7] and the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership and India's second highest civilian honour, the Padma Vibhushan in 1999 [8].

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